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The Guild of Professional Farriers may not be exactly reinventing itself, but the organization is embarking on an ambitious program of improvements designed to enhance its position in the hoof-care profession.
“We’re stepping up the game,” says new Guild President Ronald E. Kramedjian. “We want to start actively fostering the advancement of farriers within the Guild as well as improving the farrier profession.”
Kramedjian, of Lynnville, Tenn., says the new agenda includes more challenging testing for the Guild’s credentials, establishing a standardized protocol for examining horses and writing shoeing prescriptions and — eventually — establishing guidelines for farrier-centric research.
“In the past, the idea was that Guild members had already been fostered and mentored to a certain level of professionalism,” he says of the organization, which was established in 1996. “Now we are creating an entry path to help newer farriers advance their skills and become professional farriers.”
Kramedjian says 148 people currently hold the Guild’s Registered Journeyman Farrier (RJF) or Registered Master Farrier (RMF) credential.
Kramedjian, an RJF, says the organization is instituting a demanding and rigorous examination for its new Registered Farrier (RF) credential.
Those who wish to test for the credential will have to be able to verify that they have been shoeing full time for 2 years. The test will include a written exam covering all aspects of hoof care, including anatomy and small conformation faults. A shoeboard will also be required to demonstrate forging skills.
The practical exam will be virtually the…